Prove You Are Not a Dog [chapter]

David J. Mulder
Handbook of Research on Virtual Training and Mentoring of Online Instructors  
Learning online can be isolating for students. Some students may prefer to be anonymous-on the outset, at least-until they feel comfortable participating in the course. Many instructors value interaction between students or between the student and the instructor, and without a sense of "presence" in the online classroom, some students will be reticent to participate. It is thus incumbent on instructors and instructional designers to create courses that foster interaction between users to
more » ... een users to develop this sense of being "a real person" online. This chapter examines the concept of social presence, articulates reasons high social presence is a desirable feature in an online course, and provides examples instructors and designers might draw upon for developing social presence in their own courses. ABSTRACT Learning online can be isolating for students. Some students may prefer to be anonymous-on the outset, at least-until they feel comfortable participating in the course. Many instructors value interaction between students or between the student and the instructor, and without a sense of "presence" in the online classroom, some students will be reticent to participate. It is thus incumbent on instructors and instructional designers to create courses that foster interaction between users to develop this sense of being "a real person" online. This chapter examines the concept of social presence, articulates reasons high social presence is a desirable feature in an online course, and provides examples instructors and designers might draw upon for developing social presence in their own courses.
doi:10.4018/978-1-5225-6322-8.ch010 fatcat:zmy3gmev7jbhli22axlarsafbi